March 2016



Ecuador: Defense Minister Fernando Cordero resigns. In a cabinet reshuffle on March 3, Ricardo Patiño is appointed as defense minister and Guillaume Long as foreign minister.
South Africa: President Jacob Zuma survives a no-confidence motion in parliament, which is defeated 225-99.


Honduras: Héctor Leonel Ayala Alvarenga is sworn in as interior minister.
Lebanon: Parliament fails for the 36th time to elect a president due to lack of a quorum, and for a 37th time on March 23. The next session is set for April 18.

Russia: President Vladimir Putin accepts the resignation of the governor of Tver oblast, Andrey Shevelyov, and appoints Igor Rudenya as acting governor until elections.
Serbia: Parliament confirms Zoran Djordjevic as defense minister.
Spain: Parliament rejects Pedro Sánchez as prime minister (219-130), as it does again on March 4 (219-131).


Côte d'Ivoire: Former French high commissioner (1959-60) Yves Guéna dies.

Johnson Smith
Jamaica: Andrew Holness is sworn in as prime minister. On March 7 his government is sworn in with Kamina Johnson Smith as foreign minister, Robert Montague as national security minister, and Audley Shaw as finance minister; Holness holds the defense portfolio.
Saint-Pierre and Miquelon: Henri Jean is named prefect.
Thailand: Former foreign minister (1959-71) Thanat Khoman dies.


India: Former chief minister of Meghalaya (1988-90) Purno Agitok Sangma dies.
Japan: Former governor of Kumamoto (1971-83) Issei Sawada dies.
Pakistan: Iqbal Zafar Jhagra is sworn in as governor of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Samoa: In parliamentary elections, the Human Rights Protection Party wins 47 of 50 seats and the Tautua Samoa Party 3. On March 18 the new cabinet is named including Sili Epa Tuioti as finance minister.
Tanzania: Former foreign minister (1993-95) Joseph Rwegasira dies.


Slovakia: In parliamentary elections, Direction-Social Democracy wins 28.3% of the vote (49 of 150 seats), Freedom and Solidarity 12.1% (21), OLaNO-NOVA 11% (19), the Slovak National Party 8.6% (15), Kotleba-People's Party Our Slovakia 8% (14), We Are Family 6.6% (11), Bridge 6.5% (11), and Network 5.6% (10). Turnout is 59.8%. On March 9 President Andrej Kiska asks Prime Minister Robert Fico to form a new government. The new cabinet is sworn in on March 23 with Peter Gajdos as defense minister, the foreign, interior, and finance ministers being unchanged.
The Sudan: Former foreign minister (1989) Hassan al-Turabi dies.


Benin: In presidential elections, Prime Minister Lionel Zinsou wins 28.4% of the vote, Patrice Talon 24.8%, Sébastien Ajavon 23%, Abdoulaye Bio Tchané 8.8%, and former prime minister Pascal Koupaki 5.9%; turnout is 64%. A runoff is held on March 20, Talon winning 65.4% and Zinsou 34.6%; turnout is 65.6%.
Georgia: Former chairman of parliament (head of state) of South Ossetia (1991-92) Znaur Gassiyev dies.


France: Former foreign minister (1986-88) Jean-Bernard Raimond dies.


Haiti: The new government is named with Prime Minister Fritz Jean as defense and interior minister, Ericq Pierre as foreign minister, and Yves Romain Bastien as finance minister. On March 20, however, the Chamber of Deputies rejects Jean's policy statement (only 38 votes in favour, 60 required). On March 22 Enex Jean-Charles is named prime minister. On March 23 he names his government, also with Bastien as finance minister and with Pierrot Delienne as foreign and interim interior minister and Simon Dieuseul Desras as interim defense minister. Jean-Charles's policy statement is approved by the Senate (20-0) on March 24 and by the Chamber of Deputies (78-1) on March 25 and he takes office March 28.



Philippines: Jose Rene Almendras is named interim foreign secretary.


Kiribati: In presidential elections, Taneti Maamau wins about 60% of the vote, Rimeta Beniamina about 38.5%, and Tianeti Ioane about 1.5%. Maamau is sworn in on March 11. On March 15 the cabinet is sworn in including Atarake Nataara as internal affairs minister and Teuea Toatu as finance minister.

Portugal: Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa is sworn in as president.


Arab League: Ahmed Aboul Gheit (Egypt) is named as the next secretary-general, to take office in July.
Ireland: Parliament fails to elect a prime minister as incumbent Enda Kenny wins 57 votes, Micheál Martin 43, Gerry Adams 24, and Boyd Barrett 9. Kenny then resigns the post.

Russia: The acting head of the republic of Komi, Sergey Gaplikov, dismisses the chairman of the government, Vladimir Tukmakov. The first deputy chairman of the government, Larisa Maksimova, assumes his duties pending the appointment of a new chairman. However, on March 24 the post is combined with that of the head of the republic.


Benin: In a cabinet reshuffle, Toussaint Adjehounou is named interior minister.


Libya: The "unity government" of prime minister-designate Fayez al-Sarraj announces it will take office without formal parliamentary approval, citing a petition signed by a majority of lawmakers (of the Tobruk parliament) who say they support the government but were "forcibly prevented" from voting. Sarraj arrives in Tripoli on March 30, still opposed by the two existing governments in Tripoli and Tobruk.
Nigeria: Former governor of Delta (1992-93) Felix Ibru dies.
Panama: Former foreign minister (1978-81) Carlos Ozores Typaldos dies.


Germany: In state elections in Baden-Württemberg, the Greens win 30.3% of the vote (47 of 143 seats), the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) 27% (42), the Alternative for Germany (AfD) 15.1% (23), the Social Democratic Party (SPD) 12.7% (19), the Free Democratic Party (FDP) 8.3% (12), and the Left 2.9% (0); turnout is 70.4%. In Rheinland-Pfalz, the SPD wins 36.2% of the vote (39 of 101 seats), the CDU 31.8% (35), the AfD 12.6% (14), the FDP 6.2% (7), the Greens 5.3% (6), and the Left 2.8% (0); turnout is 70.4%. In Sachsen-Anhalt, the CDU wins 29.8% (30 of 87 seats), the AfD 24.2% (25), the Left 16.3% (16), the SPD 10.6% (11), the Greens 5.2% (5), and the FDP 4.9% (0); turnout is 61.1%.
Sierra Leone: In a cabinet reshuffle, Alfred Palo Conteh is named internal affairs minister and Momodu Kargbo finance minister.



Guernsey: Vice Adm. Ian Corder is sworn in as lieutenant governor.

Mauritius: Finance Minister Vishnu Lutchmeenaraidoo is named foreign minister, while Prime Minister Sir Anerood Jugnauth takes over the finance portfolio.
Sri Lanka: The governor of Central province, Surangani Ellawala, dies. On March 17 Niluka Ekanayake is appointed and sworn in as governor.
United States: The Senate confirms John B. King, Jr., as education secretary (49-40).



Myanmar: Parliament elects Htin Kyaw as president (360 of 652 votes), to take office April 1. Runners-up Myint Swe (213 votes) and Henry Van Thio (79 votes) will become first and second vice president. All are sworn in already on March 30, along with the new cabinet including Aung San Suu Kyi as foreign minister, Lt.Gen. Sein Win as defense minister, Lt.Gen. Kyaw Swe as interior minister, and Kyaw Win as finance minister.
Taiwan: President-elect Tsai Ing-wen designates Lin Chuan as premier.
United States: In special mayoral elections in Juneau, Ken Koelsch wins 59.1% of the vote and Karen Crane 40.3%. Turnout is 24.4%. Koelsch is sworn in on March 28.


Cambodia: Prak Sokhonn is named to replace Hor Namhong as foreign minister in a cabinet reshuffle, submitted to the National Assembly which is to vote on the changes on April 4.
Kenya: Former foreign minister (1990-93) Wilson Ndolo Ayah dies.


Bosnia and Herzegovina: Bakir Izetbegovic becomes chairman of the Presidency.


Germany: Former minister-president of Baden-Württemberg (1978-91) Lothar Späth and former foreign minister (2009-13) Guido Westerwelle die.
Saint Helena: Governor Mark Capes departs and Sean Burns becomes acting governor.


Cabo Verde: In parliamentary elections, the Movement for Democracy wins 54.5% of the vote (40 of 72 seats), the African Party for the Independence of Cabo Verde 38.2% (29), and the Independent and Democratic Cabo Verdian Union 6.9% (3). Turnout is 66%.
Congo (Brazzaville): In presidential elections, incumbent Denis Sassou-Nguesso wins 60.4% of the vote, Guy Brice Parfait Kolélas 15%, and Gen. Jean-Marie Michel Mokoko 13.9%. Turnout is 71%.
Denmark: Former prime minister (1972-73, 1975-82) Anker Jørgensen dies.
Kazakhstan: In parliamentary elections, the ruling Nur Otan party wins about 82% of the vote (84 of 98 elective seats), while Ak Zhol and the Communist People's Party win about 7% (7 seats) each. Turnout is 77.1%. On March 25 parliament votes to keep in place the government of Prime Minister Karim Masimov.
Laos: In parliamentary elections, 149 members are elected from a total of 210 candidates. Turnout is 97.9%.
Niger: In the presidential runoff (boycotted by the opposition), incumbent Mahamadou Issoufou wins 92.5% of the vote and Hama Amadou 7.5%. Turnout is 59.8%.
Tanzania: In re-run presidential elections in Zanzibar, incumbent Ali Mohamed Shein (Chama Cha Mapinduzi) wins 91.4% of the votes and Hamad Rashid Mohamed (Alliance for Democratic Change) 3.0%. Turnout is 67.9%. CCM also wins all 54 seats in the regional parliament.


Georgia: Former foreign minister of Abkhazia (1996-97) Konstantin Ozgan dies.
New Zealand: Dame Patsy Reddy is named as the next governor-general, to take office September 14.


Egypt: In a cabinet reshuffle, Amr al-Garhy is appointed finance minister.
Mexico: Former foreign minister (1988-93) Fernando Solana Morales dies.
South Sudan: President Salva Kiir dismisses Foreign Minister Barnaba Marial Benjamin, leaving deputy minister Bashir Gbandi in charge.


Mayotte: Former prefect (1978-80) Jean Rigotard dies.
Russia: President Vladimir Putin appoints Ramzan Kadyrov as acting head of the republic of Chechnya, as his regular term would have expired April 5.


Congo (Kinshasa): The assemblies of the new provinces elect the following governors:


India: The Uttarakhand government of Chief Minister Harish Rawat is dismissed and the state placed under president's rule.
Japan: In gubernatorial elections in Kumamoto, incumbent Ikuo Kabashima wins 68.2% of the vote and Seishi Koyama 27.3%. Turnout is 51%.


Central African Republic: Faustin Archange Touadéra is sworn in as president.
China: Bu Xiaolin is appointed acting chairwoman of the government of Nei Mongol autonomous region.
United States: Former education secretary (1979-81) Shirley Hufstedler dies.


Germany: Former foreign minister (1974-82, 1982-92) Hans-Dietrich Genscher dies.
Iraq: Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi nominates Sharif Ali ibn al-Hussein as foreign minister and Ali Allawi as finance minister.